Age 16-19

Lesson plans and activities for advanced secondary students to explore language, structure, meaning and poetic form. Some focus on hoistorical and artistic context too.

Lesson on 'Considering the snail' by Thom Gunn

To consider the definition of poetry and the nature of poetic language To consider the nature, purposes and effects of poetic form in modernist poetry To develop understanding of half rhyme, syllabic metre and enjambement

Gary Snapper

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Lesson on 'A subaltern's love song' by John Betjeman

To explore how a poet uses language to evoke a specific cultural, social and historical milieu To compare and contrast a poem with popular songs of the same era To explore the implications of writing poems inspired by real people

Nicola Onyett

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Lesson on 'A refusal to mourn the death, by fire, of a child in London' by Dylan Thomas

To explore how a poet tackles the profound subject of death To explore poetic diction and make predictions about texts To compare and contrast two poems on a similar theme written several centuries apart To evaluate a critical response to a poem and the ways in which this may affect their own views

Nicola Onyett

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Lesson on 'Mr Bleaney' by Philip Larkin

To explore how a poet builds a sense of place and uses this to give us clues about character To develop skills of close reading

Carol Atherton

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Lesson on 'Next to of course god America' by e e cummings

To focus on the use of allusion, by looking at a specific satirical mode of allusion To understand some of the features of modernism To understand aspects of the relationship between modernist art and poetry

Gary Snapper

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Lesson on 'The hill fort (Y Gaer)' by Owen Sheers

To explore how a poet uses language to evoke the themes of landscape, identity and memory To compare and contrast a pair of poems designed as companion pieces To evaluate a critical response to two poems

Nicola Onyett

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Lesson on 'Sonnet' by Billy Collins

To explore how a range of poets use the sonnet form To develop skills of close reading, including the analysis of poetic form and structure To develop skills of collaborative work

Carol Atherton

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Natural world: 'Green Lane' by Stephanie Norgate and 'Flies and Nettles' by Fergus Allen

To explore how poets envisage the relationship between humans and the natural world. To create visualisations of the poems (through PowerPoint, collage or other artwork) as a way of expressing these relationships. To encourage group work. To understand some aspects of the radical pastoral.

Carol Atherton

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Daljit Nagra

From time to time a poet is in residence at the Poetry Archive, talking about poetry with anyone who wants to join in the conversation.

Comic Verse

I'm troubled, as you can tell by my introduction, about comic verse. Comic verse gets bad press because rigid notions of comedy foreground throwaway poems. Surely the best comedy is when the poem surprises us into laughter rather than setting up t... >